Could Impact "Thousands of Verdicts": Drug Court Judge Removed Due To Drug Addiction -- purchased drugs from criminals in his court!
Could Impact "Thousands of Verdicts": Drug Court Judge Removed Due To Drug Addiction -- He purchased drugs from defendents in his court and now previous cases including "convicted" rapists and murderers have to be re-tried
Liberal civil rights advocates have installed hundreds of non-judicial panels outside the constitutional protections in order to "decriminalize" the use of drugs and they are called "Drug Courts".
Regular judges usually "preside" over the "Drug Courts" and then they go back to their usual duties, often in the same courtroom for serious criminal cases.
This is one recent case of a Drug Court judge who presided over his other duties, outside of the "drug court".
Source: WATE TV (Knoxvile Tenn). News
At least four accused rapists and accused murderers of a young Knoxville couple are all getting new trials, thanks to the drug-addicted judge who presided over the cases.
Former judge Richard Baumgartner bought extensively from the convicts in his own drug court. He considered himself above the law but finally got caught. Because he was high much of the time he was presiding over the trials, the families of the victims get to hear yet again how their children were savagely beaten, raped and mutilated before finally being killed.
The victims, Channon Christian and her boyfriend, Chris Newsom, were carjacked, raped and murdered in January 2007.
Baumgartner, who became a drug addict, doctor shopped for narcotics and bought extensively from convicts in his drug court, pleaded guilty to official misconduct in March and was later disbarred, leading to the motions for new trials in this case.
At the start of Thursday's hearing, prosecutor Leland Price, who participated in the original trials, argued that Baumgartner's conduct outside court shouldn't be a deciding factor in these motions, and it could open the door to thousands of other cases being reconsidered.
Price said there were no technical problems in the transcript records so, "We say these were fair trials."
However, Davidson's attorney, Doug Trant, said during his client's trial, Judge Baumgartner was taking up to 30 hydrocodone pills a day.